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Jake Tapper's 'The Lead' Debuts To Lower Ratings Than CNN Predecessor

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JAKE TAPPER
CNN

"The face of the new CNN" debuted with rocky ratings during his first week.

"The Lead," the new show anchored by Jake Tapper, premiered with huge expectations on Monday. New CNN chief Jeff Zucker hailed Tapper as one of the key assets in his reinvention of the network.

In its first four days, though, Tapper's show struggled to maintain the ratings from its predecessor, "The Situation Room." Tapper came in third from Monday through Thursday, with his first show drawing 400,000 viewers. As the Hollywood Reporter noted, it averaged a 50 percent drop from "The Situation Room" in the coveted A25-54 demo, as well as a 42 percent drop in total viewers.

Tapper's show did draw largely positive critical reviews, and new programs often face an initial uphill battle in the ratings. Even so, CNN will have been hoping for a more blockbuster debut.

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